Sebastian Vettel and Ferrari revealed today that they wouldn’t extend their partnership after the end of 2020 season.
It is the news that shook the world of Formula One this morning, with the fans across the globe going wild following its release.
The four-time champion and the team issued a written joint statement, which confirmed that their ways are to split at the end of the next campaign.
“There was no specific reason that led to this decision, apart from the common and amicable belief that the time had come to go our separate ways in order to reach our respective objectives,” Ferrari’s management said.
Scuderia Ferrari Mission Winnow and Sebastian Vettel decide not to extend their contracthttps://t.co/LMvLsJZiP8
— Scuderia Ferrari (@ScuderiaFerrari) May 12, 2020
This is the part of the statement which created a lot of reactions, many of them suggesting that the Italian manufacturer wasn’t honest. For a long time, the Prancing Horse has been favoring Charles Leclerc, and they were holding his side in several disputes between the two teammates, all of them taking place in the latter part of the 2019 season.
Vettel was pretty vocal about it on few occasions, and it seemed that war within Ferrari was about to escalate, but fortunately, that didn’t reach the predicted intensity.
Coming into this season, which was, by the way, stopped due to Coronavirus pandemics, Vettel was expecting a new contract from the Italian team, but he received an unpleasant surprise.
Ferrari offered him a one-year deal with a salary lower than the current one. It was an obvious sign that the team sees the German as the backup driver for Leclerc, and he didn’t want to accept such a role.
His statement released today is implying that he now has different priorities and that recent COVID-19 pandemic changed his view on the world.
“What’s been happening in these past few months has led many of us to reflect on what are our real priorities in life. One needs to use one’s imagination and to adopt a new approach to a situation that has changed,” said Vettel.
Once coming to Ferrari, Vettel was a four-time champion and on track to become one of the greatest drivers of all times. His domination between 2010 and 2013 when he drove for Red Bull was unseen, and everything suggested that at the time, the youngster has all the resources to become the new king of the sport.
"My immediate goal is to finish my long stint with Ferrari, in the hope of sharing some more beautiful moments together, to add to all those we have enjoyed so far" – Sebastian Vettel #F1 pic.twitter.com/d4HFvBOWwD
— Formula 1 (@F1) May 12, 2020
However, following his arrival in Italy, everything stopped. Ferrari was unworthy of challenging Mercedes, who was developing much better engines and vehicles. During five years spent with the Prancing Horse, Vettel posted 14 wins, being in the shadow of Lewis Hamilton and the Silver Arrows. His intentions to fight for the world title were ruthlessly denied each time.
The Prancing Horse showed a dose of disrespect toward the German, not appreciating his contribution and sacrifice during the time when they tried to catch up with Mercedes.
Vettel’s future is uncertain, and so far, there aren’t any potential spots where he might land. All the top teams already have long-term solutions. Still, having in mind his greatness and qualities it wouldn’t be odd to see some team making a spot for him and going after the title immediately.
On the other side, Ferrari has two targets for his replacement – Daniel Ricciardo from Renault and Carlos Sainz from McLaren. There were some rumors last season about Lewis Hamilton’s transfer, but it appears that the Brit won’t be leaving his Silver Arrow any time soon.
Nikola Velickovic is a sports journalist who loves to write and read on all sports. Nikola contributes both news updates and functions as a sports breaking news writer at WagerBop.